6.6.12 - The feast in the "Shepherd Psalm"
Daily Scripture: Psalm 23:5-6
5 You set a table for me
right in front of my enemies.
You bathe my head in oil;
my cup is so full it spills over!
6 Yes, goodness and faithful love
will pursue me all the days of my life,
and I will live in the Lord's house
as long as I live.
Psalm 23 is widely known as the "Shepherd Psalm," and begins with images drawn from David's own early experience as a shepherd. In verse 5, however, the imagery switches from the simple country images of God as shepherd to God as host of a lavish feast. God sets "cups" overflowing with God's eternal goodness and love before God's people, David said.
- Echoing this image, Jesus said, "Happy are people who are hungry and thirsty for righteousness, because they will be fed until they are full" (Matthew 5:6). What kinds of inner hunger(s) do you bring to God's table today? In what ways has God already been filling your cup "until it overflows"?
- To us, the phrase "you bathe my head in oil" may sound strange. In David's day, a banquet host would anoint each honored guest with a mixture of olive oil and fragrant spices. Try praying this psalm, asking God to help you live into the truth that you are not just a "hanger-on" at God's great banquet, but an honored guest. How can taking in that image re-shape your sense of how much God values you?
Loving God, thank you for the images in David's psalm that help me to visualize how much I can trust you. Thank you for the feast you provide for me each day. Amen.